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Pro cyclist suspended for shoving rival in heated post-race confrontation

Valentina Scandolara has also been fined for the incident

An Italian cyclist has been suspended for two races and fined after chasing after and shoving a rival in the aftermath of a race this week.

Valentina Scandolara was competing in the final round of the National Cycling League (NCL) — a United States-based criterium series hoping to revamp the way cycling is raced, offering a style similar to a points race on the track, with men and women competing for points on each lap and at the finish line to aid their overall team standings.

As reported by Cycling Weekly, at the finish of this week's final round in Atlanta, the Denver Disruptors' rider was seen shouting at and pushing a rider from the rival Miami Nights team. In a statement released by the NCL it was announced that Scandolara would be suspended from the opening two races of the 2024 series, as well as receiving a fine.

The National Cycling League has a zero-tolerance policy towards unsportsmanlike conduct and threatening actions. As a result of such actions following the NCL Cup Atlanta event, Valentina Scandolara has been issued a fine and a two-race suspension for NCL races in 2024.

Any use of such actions towards opponents, teammates, USA Cycling officials, or representatives of the league is strictly prohibited as outlined in Section 8(A)(5)(i) of the USA Cycling Rules.

Our top priority is the health and safety of our riders. We will continue to reinforce the policies of USA Cycling and the NCL.

Valentina Scandolara National Cycling League (GCN+/YouTube)
Valentina Scandolara National Cycling League (GCN+/YouTube)

Last week, AG2R Citroën's Benoît Cosnefroy grabbed British rider Lewis Askey's jersey after a sprint finish at the Tour du Limousin.

Askey later explained he had gone to see the Frenchman to explain what had happened from his viewpoint, adding that they had shaken hands and there is "no bad blood".

Cosnefroy gave his side of the story too... "You have to look at the last 150 metres. It's the game to put me in the box, but from there to put me at the feet of barriers... It's his job to put me in the box, if he does it — there's no problem, but between putting myself in the box so that I don't pass and putting me at the feet of barriers, there is a difference.

"We already take enough risks on the bike, we are often afraid for our lives, and when you see yourself touching the barrier feet, I can tell you that it's scary. The team worked superbly, so I wanted to look for the win and I felt that I had it surely in my legs. no more fear at the finish, that's just it."


Dan is the news editor and has spent the past four years writing stories and features, as well as (hopefully) keeping you entertained on the live blog. Having previously written about nearly every other sport under the sun for the Express, and the weird and wonderful world of non-league football for the Non-League Paper, Dan joined in 2020. Come the weekend you'll find him labouring up a hill, probably with a mouth full of jelly babies, or making a bonk-induced trip to a south of England petrol station... in search of more jelly babies.

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